Ridgefield is certainly getting its fall ON! Jesse Lee Church is preparing for the arrival of the pumpkins, the Cass Gilbert Fountain is bedecked with yellow mums, and… the giant pumpkins will be rolling into town this weekend!
Quite fittingly, fall “officially” arrived today, Thursday, September 22! [In case you care… technically speaking, the autumnal equinox is the moment when the Sun crosses the Equator, and here in the Northern Hemisphere, we will begin to see more darkness than daylight. Learn more about the Autumnal Equinox via the Farmers’ Almanac here.]
So, let’s talk about Sunday’s Giant Pumpkin Weigh-off.
2022 marks the 10th anniversary of the Weigh-off and Festival which will take place in Ballard Park from 10am to 3pm. Spearheaded by two Ridgefield residents and HUGE pumpkin enthusiasts Jess Collins and Steve Mayden (who is also a pumpkin grower) the community event is MORE than giant orange beauties! Thanks to the Connecticut Giant Pumpkin Growers Club for your advocacy and support!
Henny Penny will be back again this year with their amazing farm animals. Musical performances will take place during the day. If you are hungry, we’ve got you covered. Grab a waffle from Waffle Cabin or pizza from Genoa’s pizza truck and stay for the whole day!
Decorate a pumpkin at home and bring it to Ballard Park to enter in the pumpkin decorating contest! Pumpkins can be carved or decorated. Invite your friends to join you at the weigh-off and you can all vote for your favorite decorated pumpkins!
Learn more about the Giant Pumpkin Weigh-off and Festival HERE.
As you can see from image #1, Jesse Lee Church is preparing the way … for the pumpkins!
The Pumpkin Patch opens on Saturday, October 1. Volunteers staff the pumpkin patch through the month of October during the week from 2-6PM and on weekends and holidays from 10AM-6PM.
The Jesse Lee Church Pumpkin Patch is about more than pumpkins. It’s about supporting our mission partners in the Navajo Nation who supply our pumpkins, creating something the whole community can enjoy every October and connecting with each other as we revel in this Fall favorite activity.
Many hands fill the pumpkin patch faster. If the spirit of Halloween moves you, consider volunteering! The unloading fun starts at 9AM on October 1 in the Jesse Lee parking lot off King Lane!
Read more here.
Feel like day-tripping for pumpkins and apples? We made a list of some of the popular farms a short(ish) drive from Ridgefield that offer pick-your-own apples, and in some cases, pumpkins too!
Jones Family Farms is located at 606 Walnut Tree Road, Shelton, CT.
Pumpkin picking only.
Starting Sept 24, 9-5:30. Reservations save you $2 per entry
Starting Sept 26,10-5:30.
For additional information, visit Jones Family Farm online or call (203) 929-8425.
Silverman’s Farm, located at 451 Sport Hill Farm in Easton, CT. Open 7 days a week.
Apple picking only. Click here for schedule.
Beardsley’s Cider Mill and Orchard located at 278 Leavenworth Road in Shelton, CT
Apple picking only. PYO is CASH ONLY and $20 per bag which holds up to 10 lbs. Visit their website to find out which apple variety they are picking.
Greig Farm is located at 227 Pitcher Ln, Red Hook, NY.
Pick your own apples and pumpkins.
Enjoy 400 acres of rustic charm, make friends with the goats, and shop the farmers market seven days a week. Greig Farm 9 am to 7 pm for picking apples and pumpkins.
Visit Greig Farm online here
Blue Jay Orchards is located at 125 Plum Tree Road in Bethel.
Apple picking only. Pumpkin “patch”
While the farm has a large pumpkin patch, they don’t offer “pick your own”. The farm does offer pick your own apples.
Visit them online here for call (203) 748-0119
Rogers Orchards is located at 336 Long Bottom Road in Southington, CT
Pick your own apples only.
Read more about Pick-Your-Own farms in Connecticut here!
No Nightmare on New?
And… just throwing it out there – there’s not much happening on New Street. Typically, Bill Franzen (AKA Mr. Halloween) is hard at work during the month of September transforming his property into the Nightmare on New Street. Maybe it’s too early? Look at photo #3. What’s happening? Looks like we will have to do some investigative Halloween reporting.